Whenever it's blood orange season, my inner self gets giddy, joyful, and I cannot contain myself from buying at least a dozen at the store. Have you ever seen such a gorgeous flesh hue before? Quite literally the color of a deep crimson red, but sweet and satisfying in every bite. Plus the little crunch and snap from the added poppy seed gives such incredible texture and flavor. This blood orange poppy seed loaf is one for the books, and is absolutely perfect to use up those blood oranges you purchased.
Blood oranges are pretty seasonal to fall/winter months, so when you find them, know they're in season but not for THAT long.
Breakfast loaves and muffins are my favorite things to bake, such as my chocolate chip loaf cake, my bakery-style coffee cake muffins, or even a classic blueberry streusel version. Delicious, decadent, and oh so perfect for a breakfast sweet treat.
- What ingredients do I need for this poppy seed loaf cake?
- How do I make this loaf cake?
- Recipe Swaps and Substitutions
- Ways to serve this blood orange poppy seed loaf cake
- What if I can't find blood oranges?
- How do I store this? Can I freeze it?
- Hungry for more?
- Did you like this recipe? Share it!
- Blood Orange Poppy Seed Loaf
What ingredients do I need for this poppy seed loaf cake?
- All Purpose Flour - a classic staple flour in baking. I like to use Bob's Red Mill or King Arthur Flour for my baking.
- Baking Powder - using baking powder gives the loaf the rise and airy texture it deserves!
- Poppy Seeds - a little more protein, and a fun crunch in each bite
- Baking Salt - baking salt, like the one I used with Diamond Crystals Salt, is great to help offset the sweetness in the bake.
- Eggs - we use eggs to help bind the wet ingredients together, and helps provide a moist texture.
- Sugar - cane sugar is what we use here, we don't use more than ¾ cup for the entire recipe!
- Milk - don't forget to add the milk, which helps the loaf retain its flavor and moisture. When I tested this recipe for the second time, I completely forgot to add. So, don't be like me 🙂
- Oil - a little fat helps give the loaf a velvety taste.
- Blood Orange Juice - blood orange juice gives the bread that added sweetness it deserves.
- Blood Orange Zest - a little zest added to the batter gives a pop of brightness and citrus flavor.
- Vanilla Extract - all good, classic bakes require some vanilla extract!
See the recipe card below for specific information about quantities.
How do I make this loaf cake?
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350º and line a loaf pan with parchment and nonstick spray. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract, oil, and milk with a whisk until the eggs are full incorporated.
Step 2: In the same bowl, add in the blood orange juice and zest. Whisk to combine.
Step 3: Pour in the flour, baking powder, salt, and using a spatula begin to fold the flour into the wet ingredients.
Step 4: To the batter, pour in the poppy seeds and mix until the poppy seeds are evenly distributed in the batter. Let the batter sit for 15-20 minutes.
Step 5: Pour in the batter into the pan. You can also use a cookie scoop to add the batter to the pan.
Step 6: Spread the batter evenly using an offset spatula or the back of a regular spatula. Place in the oven to bake for 55-60 minutes. Insert a toothpick into the center of the loaf. The loaf is done baking when the toothpick comes out clean.
HINT: Remember to let the batter sit on the counter for at least 15-20 minutes, this allows the baking soda and baking powder to work and gives the loaf a nicer rise and an airy texture.
Recipe Swaps and Substitutions
Here are a few things you might want to swap and substitute depending upon your dietary needs or if you're bringing to someone that has specific allergies:
- Flour - Swap the all purpose flour with a 1:1 gluten free flour like Primal Palate's All-Purpose Gluten-Free Flour. It's one of the best.
- Sugar - You can use coconut sugar instead of cane sugar in this recipe if you want to be mindful of your sugar intake and glucose spiking.
- Oranges - If you are making this in a season where blood oranges are not available, you can easily use a navel orange. It is the best substitute in terms of overall citrus flavor and zest.
Ways to serve this blood orange poppy seed loaf cake
Some of the ways I like to serve this blood orange poppy seed loaf are:
- For a brunch - slice up a few pieces and lay on a charcuterie board or platter for a show stopping presentation
- Make muffins - My loaf recipes all work really well as muffins, or even as mini loaves or mini muffins.
- Freezer-friendly - add a loaf to the freezer for another day, or take a few slices out at a time when you want them.
- Make into french toast - slice a thick piece, dip into an egg and milk mixture, then add to a frying pan like you would with dipped bread. A fun, flavorful twist on a classic breakfast.
What if I can't find blood oranges?
Have no fear! There are other oranges you can use in this recipe if you can't find any blood oranges in your grocery store. Here's my favorites:
- Navel oranges - standard oranges typically found in the store.
- Cara Cara oranges - another classic option, pretty easily found.
- Clementine oranges - small, but super flavorful and mighty!
If oranges aren't your thing, check out these alternatives:
How do I store this? Can I freeze it?
This poppy seed loaf will stay on the countertop in a tightly sealed container for up to 3-4 days. You can also add to the fridge if you'd like, but let come to room temperature before serving.
I also suggest adding a loaf to the freezer for a day where you just don't feel like being in the kitchen. Be sure to label the freezer loaf with the date in which it was baked, and it will be good for up to one to two months in the freezer.
Hungry for more?
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
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Blood Orange Poppy Seed Loaf
- 1 large mixing bowl
- 1 small mixing bowl
- 1 hand whisk
- 1 spatula
- 1 loaf pan
- measuring spoons and cups
- parchment paper
- non stick spray
- 256 grams all purpose flour 2 cups scooped and leveled
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking salt
- 2 whole eggs
- 150 grams cane sugar ¾ cup
- ¼ cup avocado oil
- ½ cup milk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 ½ tablespoon poppy seeds
- ½ cup blood orange juice
- 2 tablespoon blood orange zest
- Preheat the oven to 350º and line a loaf pan with parchment and nonstick spray.
- In a large bowl, combine the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract, oil, and milk with a whisk until the eggs are full incorporated.
- In the same bowl, add in the blood orange juice and zest. Whisk to combine.
- Pour in the flour, baking powder, salt, and using a spatula begin to fold the flour into the wet ingredients.
- To the batter, pour in the poppy seeds and mix until the poppy seeds are evenly distributed in the batter. Let the batter sit for 15-20 minutes.
- Pour in the batter into the pan. You can also use a cookie scoop to add the batter to the pan.
- Spread the batter evenly using an offset spatula or the back of a regular spatula. Place in the oven to bake for 55-60 minutes.
- Insert a toothpick into the center of the loaf. The loaf is done baking when the toothpick comes out clean.